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Guy Gavriel Kay

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Eeekkk. Out tomorrow. I am excited (and my kindle will be downloading).

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I read A Song for Arbonne years ago. I found it intriguing, but never got deeper into GGK at the time. What would everyone recommend from him to get going again? 

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7 hours ago, Veltigar said:

I read A Song for Arbonne years ago. I found it intriguing, but never got deeper into GGK at the time. What would everyone recommend from him to get going again? 

His top books for me are The Lions of Al-Rassan and The Sarantine Mosaic duology (Sailing to Sarantium and Lord of Emperors). Under Heaven is another excellent one.

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Have to say, A Brightness Long Ago is so good that I just had to go and re-read Children of Earth and Sky. I didn't even do that after River of Stars, though I enjoyed it and its predecessor Under Heaven very much. It's a beautiful novel, meditating on memory, aging, and loss.

I definitely tend to recommend The Lions of Al-Rassan as an introduction to Kay, because to me it's pretty much his most perfect standalone novel. But if one wants distinctly more fantasy elements, it has to be Tigana

Lord of Emperors still has my favorite action sequence in any novel ever.

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IMO, Kay's best book is still pretty much Tigana, followed by Song for Narbonne.

Unlike people here, perhaps because I know the locations, Spanish, the history, etc. so well, Lions ranks for me with the Fionavar Tapestry -- very low, and never to be re-read.  Kay's non-existent language and linguistic capacity are always painful to me, in whatever book pretense imitation history and culture he's employing.

 

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2 hours ago, Ran said:

Have to say, A Brightness Long Ago is so good that I just had to go and re-read Children of Earth and Sky. I didn't even do that after River of Stars, though I enjoyed it and its predecessor Under Heaven very much. It's a beautiful novel, meditating on memory, aging, and loss.

I definitely tend to recommend The Lions of Al-Rassan as an introduction to Kay, because to me it's pretty much his most perfect standalone novel. But if one wants distinctly more fantasy elements, it has to be Tigana

Lord of Emperors still has my favorite action sequence in any novel ever.

Spoiler

The race?

 

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41 minutes ago, Astromech said:
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The race?

 

Yep! Exhilirating.

 

@Darth Richard II,

 

It links to Children of Earth and Sky but in a grace note kind of way.

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Thanks everyone for the recommendations. As my local bookshop has a copy of Tigana on the shelves, I'll think I'll start with that one :) 

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12 hours ago, Veltigar said:

Thanks everyone for the recommendations. As my local bookshop has a copy of Tigana on the shelves, I'll think I'll start with that one :) 

I think if you aren’t keen its still worth trying Lions of Al-Rassan.

unless its the prose you dont like, i feel Kay’s style is pretty distinctive so if you hate one you’ll hate them all

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I'm enjoying the new book a lot.  

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New one is fabulous. Identifiably Kay and just gorgeous.

 

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Have been behind on trying more Kay in general, beyond Tigana, Arbonne, and the Fionavar Tapestry (which Instill haven't actually finished), but you all have me ready to go back, so I'm starting Lions today...

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On 5/26/2019 at 8:29 PM, Deedles said:

New one is fabulous. Identifiably Kay and just gorgeous.

 

Absolutely.  I nearly cried at two points, something I rarely do when reading.

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As someone who didn't like River of Stars and Children of Earth and Sky, or who at least found them do be way below Kay's past quality, do you think I'd enjoy this new one? It's been a while since I've read those two, but I remember feeling like I was reading the same Kay story, just with flatter characters and an increasing propensity for authorial intrusion into the narrative and tons of "telling, not showing." Is the new one similar?

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1 minute ago, Caligula_K3 said:

As someone who didn't like River of Stars and Children of Earth and Sky, or who at least found them do be way below Kay's past quality, do you think I'd enjoy this new one? It's been a while since I've read those two, but I remember feeling like I was reading the same Kay story, just with flatter characters and an increasing propensity for authorial intrusion into the narrative and tons of "telling, not showing." Is the new one similar?

It is not a significant stylistic departure from those works. If you don't care for them, you won't care for this.

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Finished Brightness yesterday and absolutely loved it. It is very much a Kay book, but riveting and moving. If I have one mild complaint it’s that the authorial intrusion about small decisions having big life impacts got repetitive but that’s minor and fits in the narrative structure of the novel as a reminiscence by the protagonist. 

I also adore how Kay drops Easter Eggs from other novels in the book. I’m sure I probably only caught half of them. 

 

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I enjoyed A Brightness, especially the links that it built between The Sarantine Mosaic and Children.  It has also given me an interest in reading more of the real world history that formed the basis of the story.

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Posted (edited)
53 minutes ago, Arataniello said:

I enjoyed A Brightness, especially the links that it built between The Sarantine Mosaic and Children.  It has also given me an interest in reading more of the real world history that formed the basis of the story.

Roger Crowley wrote several very good books on related topics. Very engaging narrative histories.

 

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/133064.Roger_Crowley

Edited by Astromech

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Crushed this book in 1/16th the time it took me to read the previous in my TBR pile, and I miss it already. 

My favorite Kay has been supplanted. 

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